Nurse Castaway was one of the first people I met after leaving hospital.
It was the summer of 2012 and she was the only patient in the ward.
She was a very warm, gentle person, and I felt so bad for her.
I’d come to know her for months.
When she told me she’d been diagnosed with breast cancer, I felt helpless.
It took me years to understand what was happening in her mind.
I had been told she would be fine, but when she was released from hospital I felt sick.
I felt like I had lost a family member.
In that moment, I knew I had to do something.
I decided I would take care of my mother.
I did everything I could to help her.
My father and mother worked as a team to care for her, and we gave her medical attention.
I went to every single doctor and hospital to ask about her.
There was no treatment, no care.
I didn’t have anyone who could help me understand what she was going through.
I spent my days in a depression.
I was angry and sad.
I couldn’t understand why she was in such pain, or why she couldn’t see me.
It didn’t help that she didn’t seem to be getting better.
I knew it was time for me to leave.
The first time I tried to leave was on October 21, 2013, when I got a call from my mother’s family.
She told me I was in the hospital and she had to go to the bathroom.
I said, “No, it’s okay, I’m staying.
It’s just a matter of when.”
She was so upset and I told her it was too late.
She just started crying and sobbing.
My mother’s illness left me in a hole.
I found myself thinking, ‘I can’t just leave her.’
I needed to do everything in my power to help the woman I loved.
In the weeks that followed, I did whatever I could.
I started calling all my friends, my boyfriends, and family members to let them know I was OK.
I tried my best to stay in touch with her, but the phone was always ringing.
She never got the call.
My parents were on vacation in Japan, and they weren’t in contact with me.
I wasn’t able to stay with my mom.
I called my boyfriend, who also had cancer, and asked him to call me as soon as possible.
I told him that I needed him to help me because I had so much pain in my stomach and in my legs.
I asked him if I could call her at home, and he said yes.
I waited until I heard from my mom’s family, and then I texted my boyfriend.
We didn’t hear from her for about two months, but on the last day of my visit, I called her and said, ‘Please come to the hospital.’
I couldn-t believe it.
I cried for two hours and told her how I felt.
She started crying again.
It really hurt me.
She said, “‘I’ll be fine.
I just have to go.
I don’t know what will happen.’
I said it was her decision.
I’m sorry I had no idea what was going on.
But I knew that she was gone.
After my mother died, I started thinking about her every day.
I kept her number in my phone and I used it every day to talk to her.
She gave me hope.
She made me feel like she loved me.
One day, I got an email from her.
It read, “I’m so happy I’m going to be okay.”
She asked me if I wanted to meet up and talk about my life.
It felt like her last goodbye.
She looked at me and said: “Thank you for everything.”
I told my story and told everyone she was an amazing person who always made me laugh.
I am so glad I was able to help other women.
I can’t say enough good things about my mother, and for me, she was a source of strength.
I wanted everyone who cares about other women to know that they are not alone.
And if you’re in pain, you can count on me to help you.
Posted by The Center for Women in Nursing at 11:28 PM